The Real Heroes

At this time of year, we hear a lot about the “heroes” playing in the World Series or battling in football games or skating on the ice for the NHL. But in 2005, we all know who the real heroes are: Those thousands of people who played vital roles in coming to the aid of hurricane victims.

I was particularly touched by TV coverage of the neonatal intensive care teams in New Orleans that rode out the storm to take care of tiny newborns. These nurses and doctors, and others like them, worked long hours under incredibly difficult conditions, even though, in some cases, they had lost their own homes. We can all be heroes in our own way by making contributions to charities involved in hurricane relief efforts. Dealing with the aftermath of the storms will take years, and the need for funds won’t abate any time soon.

But making a contribution doesn’t necessarily mean writing a check. A news story on page 8 outlines how several health care information technology companies are lending a hand by donating hardware and software. For example, PatientKeeper donated software for use by doctors working with victims on the Gulf Coast, Epocrates donated medical reference software, Motion Computing donated Tablet PCs and VeriChip donated RFID chips. I urge other companies to devise creative ways to use their technology to lend a hand to the relief efforts.

If you haven’t visited yet, I encourage you to take a close look at our Virtual Trade Show on Electronic Medical Records, where you’ll find three archived “general sessions” featuring presentations by consultants, plus numerous interactive exhibits from leading technology firms.

By going to, you’ll open the door to a wealth of timely, FREE information and insights on how to create a successful strategy for implementing all the components of electronic records. The general sessions address software shopping tips, strategies for group practices and systems integration challenges. A fourth general session, pinpointing issues that hospitals face, will be available Nov. 15.

Based on the success of this year’s event, we’ll be expanding the Virtual Trade Show in 2006 to a year-round event, with general sessions each month tied to the theme of a story in the current issue of the magazine. Plus, we’ll add a second exhibit hall featuring Microsoft and its business partners. In the new Microsoft Pavilion, you’ll also find an expanded Microsoft Healthcare and Life Sciences Solutions Directory, with in-depth information on hundreds of applications.